Karen Inouye

Ruth N. Halls Associate Professor and Director of Asian American Studies Program

IU Bloomington

Full Biography

Dr. Inouye's research addresses the role of historical memory in post-WWII Asian American and Asian Canadian life. Her most recent book, The Long Afterlife of Nikkei Wartime Incarceration (Stanford University Press, 2016), explores the political, educational and legislative activism that Japanese Americans undertook in the post-War years as a response to wartime incarceration.

Research Interests

  • Asian American and Asian Canadian studies
  • Transnational American studies
  • Afterlife of wartime incarceration
  • Wartime prisons on Native land


  • Ph.D., American Studies, Brown University


  • 2024, Mary Kitagawa: A Nikkei Canadian Life, Stanford University Press, forthcoming.
  • 2018, “Excerpt from The Long Afterlife,” Journal of Transnational American Studies, 9(1), pp. 98-113.
  • 2016, “Visual Games and the Unseeing of Race in the Late Nineteenth Century,” co-authored with Bret Rothstein, American Quarterly, June 2016, pp. 264-287.
  • 2014, “Eternal Present: Retroactive Diplomas in Canada and the US,” Journal of Asian American Studies, October 2014, pp. 339-366.
  • 2012, “Japanese American Wartime Experience: Tamotsu Shibutani and Methodological Innovation,” 1935 – 1978, Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences, pp. 318-338.
  • 2011, “Viewing World War Two Internment through Emiko Omori’s Rabbit in the Moon,” Journal of American Ethnic History, 30:4, pp. 33-39 (invited essay).

Honors and Awards

  • Visiting Scholar for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, CSREA, Brown Univeristy, Fall 2019
  • Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society (CRRES) Research Grant, 2019-2020
  • College of Arts and Humanities Institute (CAHI) Research Fellowship, Fall 2017
  • New Frontiers in Creativity and Scholarship Research Fellowship, 2017-2018
  • College of Arts and Humanities Institute (CAHI) Research Travel Award, 2016
  • “Best of Social Sciences” Fellow, Spring 2017
  • Trustees’ Teaching Award, 2014, 2016, 2018
  • Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society (CRRES) Research Grant, 2013-2014
  • New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities Research Fellowship, 2012-2013